Education Global Practice
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Education, Poverty and inequality, Labor markets, Economics of education
Education Global Practice
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Jaime Saavedra leads the Education Global Practice at the World Bank Group. He rejoined the World Bank Group from the Government of Peru, where he served as Minister of Education from 2013 through 2016. During his tenure, the performance of Peru’s education system improved substantially as measured by international learning assessments. Throughout his career, Mr. Saavedra, a Peruvian national, has led groundbreaking work in the areas of poverty and inequality, employment and labor markets, the economics of education, and monitoring and evaluation systems. He has held positions at a number of international organizations and think-tanks, among them the Inter-American Development Bank, Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, International Labour Organization, Grupo de Análisis para el Desarollo and the National Council of Labor in Peru. He has also held teaching and research positions in academia and has published extensively. Prior to assuming his role as Minister for Education of Peru, he had a ten year career at the World Bank where, most recently, he served as Director for Poverty Reduction and Equity as well as Acting Vice President, Poverty Reduction & Economic Management Network. Mr. Saavedra holds a Ph.D in economics from Columbia University and a Bachelor's degree in economics from the Catholic University of Peru.
Publication Search Results
Now showing 1 - 10 of 10
Publication(World Bank, Washington, D.C., 2003-11) Chong, Alberto ; Hentschel, Jesko ; Saavedra, JaimeUsing panel data for Peru for 1994-2000, the authors find that when households receive two, or more services jointly, the welfare increases as measured by changes in consumption are larger than when services are provided separately. The increases appear to be more than proportional, as F-tests on the coefficients of the corresponding regressors confirm. Thus, the authors find that bundling services may help realize welfare effects.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008-04) Breceda, Karla ; Rigolini, Jamele ; Saavedra, JaimeThis paper presents an incidence analysis of both social spending and taxation for seven Latin American countries, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The analysis shows that Latin American countries are headed de facto toward a minimalist welfare state similar to the one in the United States, rather than toward a stronger, European-like welfare state. Specifically, both in Latin America and in the United States, social spending remains fairly flat across income quintiles. On the taxation side, high income inequality causes the rich to bear most of the taxation burden. This causes a vicious cycle where the rich oppose the expansion of the welfare state (as they bear most of its burden without receiving much back), which in turn maintains long-term inequalities. The recent increased socioeconomic instability in many Latin American countries shows nonetheless a real need for a stronger welfare state, which, if unanswered, may degenerate into short-term and unsustainable policies. The case of Chile suggests that a way out from this apparent dead end can be found, as elites may be willing to raise their contribution to social spending if this can lead to a more stable social contract.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2012-09) Inchauste, Gabriela ; Olivieri, Sergio ; Saavedra, Jaime ; Winkler, HernanThis paper quantifies the contributions of different factors to poverty reduction observed in Bangladesh, Peru and Thailand over the last decade. In contrast to methods that focus on aggregate summary statistics, the method adopted here generates entire counterfactual distributions to account for the contributions of demographics and income from labor and non-labor sources in explaining poverty reduction. The authors find that the most important contributor was the growth in labor income, mostly in the form of farm income in Bangladesh and Thailand and non-farm income in the case of Peru. This growth in labor incomes was driven by higher returns to individual and household endowments, pointing to increases in productivity and real wages as the driving force behind poverty declines. Lower dependency ratios also helped to reduce poverty, particularly in Bangladesh. Non-labor income contributed as well, albeit to a smaller extent, in the form of international remittances in the case of Bangladesh and through public and private transfers in Peru and Thailand. Transfers are more important in explaining the reduction in extreme compared with moderate poverty.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-12) Arias, Omar ; Blom, Andreas ; Bosch, Mariano ; Cunningham, Wendy ; Fiszbein, Ariel ; Lopez Acevedo, Gladys ; Maloney, William ; Saavedra, Jaime ; Sanchez-Paramo, Carolina ; Santamaria, Mauricio ; Siga, LucasThis paper selectively synthesizes much of the research on Latin American and Caribbean labor markets in recent years. Several themes emerge that are particularly relevant to ongoing policy dialogues. First, labor legislation matters, but markets may be less segmented than previously thought. The impetus to voluntary informality, which appears to be a substantial fraction of the sector, implies that the design of social safety nets and labor legislation needs to take a more integrated view of the labor market, taking into account the cost-benefit analysis workers and firms make about whether to interact with formal institutions. Second, the impact of labor market institutions on productivity growth has probably been underemphasized. Draconian firing restrictions increase litigation and uncertainty surrounding worker separations, reduce turnover and job creation, and poorly protect workers. But theory and anecdotal evidence also suggest that they, and other related state or union induced rigidities, may have an even greater disincentive effect on technological adoption, which accounts for half of economic growth. Finally, institutions can affect poverty and equity, although the effects seem generally small and channels are not always clear. Overall, the present constellation of labor regulations serves workers and firms poorly and both could benefit from substantial reform.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-12) Bain, Katherine ; Braun, Franka ; Saavedra, JaimeA two-day workshop, organized by the World Banks Poverty Reduction and Economic Management (PREM) and Human Development (HD) departments, was held in June 2005 in the Dominican Republic with the objective to explore whether voice and accountability can improve the effectiveness of Conditional Transfer Programs. Participants included government and civil society representatives from ten countries in the region, as well as World Bank staff. Among the recommendations, participants suggested applying clear and transparent targeting rules instead of secret formulas, locating interview sites in schools and health centers to reduce patronage and to allow for witnesses, using qualitative information to make targeting formulas fit local realities, allowing for verification of self-reported income information, defining targeting as a success when it achieves acceptance and comprehension of program goals, being clear about program rules, posting lists of beneficiaries in public places, using civil society organizations to facilitate the flow of information, improving incentives to encourage public service providers to provide better information and be more responsive, providing appeal mechanisms, and allowing beneficiaries to choose among competing providers.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-09) Burdescu, Ruxandra ; del Villar, Azul ; Mackay, Keith ; Rojas, Fernando ; Saavedra, JaimeMany governments in the Latin America and Caribbean region (LAC) have gained an increased understanding of the value of M&E to help both governments and donors alike better understand what public investments and interventions work well, which do not, and the reasons why. Monitoring the performance of public programs and institutions helps increase their effectiveness, provides increased accountability and transparency in how public monies are used, and can inform the budgetary process and the allocation of public resources, thus improving their effectiveness to improve welfare and, consequently, reduce poverty and increase the equality of opportunities.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-09) Burdescu, Ruxandra ; del Villar, Azul ; Mackay, Keith ; Rojas, Fernando ; Saavedra, JaimeCountries are driving the efforts to institutionalize monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems. Through the promotion of knowledge-sharing, and by taking stock of current M&E systems, fostering South-South collaboration, raising awareness through presentations, and, by launching an informal regional network, the note reviews the cases of Colombia, Chile, Brazil, Mexico and Peru. It became evident from country experiences, that there is no single "destination" for countries. Some stress a system of performance indicators, while others focus on conducting evaluations (program reviews or rigorous impact evaluation (IE). And while some countries have created a whole of government approach driven by finance, or planning ministries, others are more focused on sector M&E systems. One key characteristic of most of the systems that are now at different stages of implementation in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) is that they are country-led efforts to institutionalize M&E, rather than donor-driven.
Publication(Washington, DC: World Bank, 2009) Paes de Barros, Ricardo ; Ferreira, Francisco H.G. ; Molinas Vega, Jose R. ; Saavedra Chanduvi, JaimeOver the past decade, faster growth and smarter social policy have reversed the trend in Latin America's poverty. Too slowly and insufficiently, but undeniably, the percentage of Latinos who are poor has at long last begun to fall. This has shifted the political and policy debates from poverty toward inequality, something to be expected in a region that exhibits the world's most regressive distribution of development outcomes such as income, land ownership, and educational achievement. This book is a breakthrough in the measurement of human opportunity. It builds sophisticated formulas to answer a rather simple question: how much influence do personal circumstances have on the access that children get to the basic services that are necessary for a productive life? Needless to say, producing a methodology to measure human opportunity, and applying it across countries in one region, is just a first step. On the one hand, technical discussions and scientific vetting will continue, and refinements will surely follow. On the other, applying the new tool to a single country will allow for adjustments that make the findings much more useful to its policy realities. And fascinating comparative lessons could be learned by measuring human opportunity in developed countries across, say, the states of the United States or the nations of Europe. But the main message this book delivers remains a powerful one: it is possible to make equity a central purpose, if not the very definition, of development. That is, perhaps, it's most important contribution.
No Thumbnail AvailablePublication( 2009) Breceda, Karla ; Rigolini, Jamele ; Saavedra, JaimeThis article analyzes the incidence of social spending and taxation by income quintile for seven Latin American countries, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Absolute levels of social spending in Latin America are fairly flat across income quintiles, a pattern similar to that in the United States and differing from the more progressive pattern of spending in the United Kingdom. The structure of taxation in Latin America is also similar to that of the United States. Because of high income inequality in Latin America and the US, the rich bear of most the burden, whereas the United Kingdom taxes the middle class to a greater extent. The analysis suggests that many Latin American countries are trapped in a vicious cycle in which the rich resist the expansion of the welfare state (because they bear most of its tax burden without receiving commensurate benefits), and their opposition to its expansion in turn maintains long-term inequalities.
Publication(World Bank, 2012) Molinas Vega, José R. ; Paes de Barros, Ricardo ; Saavedra Chanduvi, Jaime ; Giugale, Marcelo ; Cord, Louise J. ; Pessino, Carola ; Hasan, AmerThis book reports on the status and evolution of human opportunity in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). It builds on the 2008 publication in several directions. First, it uses newly available data to expand the set of opportunities and personal circumstances under analysis. The data are representative of about 200 million children living in 19 countries over the last 15 years. Second, it compares human opportunity in LAC with that of developed countries, among them the United States and France, two very different models of social policy. This allows for illuminating exercises in benchmarking and extrapolation. Third, it looks at human opportunity within countries, across regions, states, and cities. This gives us a preliminary glimpse at the geographic dimension of equity, and at the role that different federal structures play. The overall message that emerges is one of cautious hope. LAC is making progress in opening the doors of development to all, but it still has a long way to go. At the current pace, it would take, on average, a generation for the region to achieve universal access to just the basic services that make for human opportunity. Seen from the viewpoint of equity, even our most successful nations lag far behind the developed world, and intracounty regional disparities are large and barely converging. Fortunately, there is much policy makers can do about it.